2012 / Director. Stobe Harju.
Review by Glenn Cochrane.
I can understand IMAGINAERUM not hitting cinema screens but that in itself is a travesty. If ever there were a film that deserved to be seen in a big, bold and all-consuming way, it is this one. The film itself is a visual representation of an album by the Finnish band Nightwish. They have described it as MOULIN ROUGE meets THE WALL but that is a dreadful comparison. I would be more inclined to liken it to THE FALL meets MIRRORMASK or even PAN'S LABYRINTH. This wonderful and dark tale takes place inside and outside of an old man's psyche. When he falls gravely ill and slips into a coma he is whisked away into a world made up of past memories. From early childhood traumas to adulthood secrets... IMAGINAERUM is a beautiful exploration of the mind and the human condition that is beautifully told alongside the music of Nightwish. To the band's credit, their music takes a back seat and never intrudes on the story itself. It accompanies the imagery and lends an added sense of wonder. The character creations are fantastic with clear inspiration being the likes of Tim Burton and David Lynch. I was captivated for the film's entire duration and couldn't consume enough of it. With a nice taut running time of 80 minutes the film never feels padded or stretched and everything has it's place without feeling gratuitous or dumb. IMAGINAERUM should have enjoyed some cinema time, if even a limited run... this is definitely a film I will consider featuring as an upcoming FakeShemp screening. Stay tuned for that. Magical. Wonderfil. Fantastical. Overwhelming. Lovely.